Climate at the Core: Reconstructing Past Climate to Understand the Future Using Tree-Rings

Presenter: Jessie Pearl, PhD student, Department of Geosciences

In this talk, Jessie will describe the science of dendrochronology— tree-ring dating — that was created at the world-renowned Laboratory of Tree Ring Research here at the University of Arizona. She will discuss the interpretation of tree-rings and show how this technique can provide especially valuable information to her region of study: the northeastern United States. Jessie will show how coastal trees can provide a pre-historic temperature record and discuss climate influences that remain to be interpreted from the data. These records will help inform policy makers and ordinary citizens about rising temperatures and future storm scenarios for the New England region.

Borderlands Brewing Co. Science Café
119 E Toole Ave

Pima County and the Next Economy: How Energy Planning Can Recession-Proof Our Region

The Office of Sustainability and Conservation is very excited to announce that local resource economist guru, Skip Laitner, will be our featured speaker for February’s Sustainability Brown Bag! He’ll be discussing his experience as the co-creator of Luxembourg’s strategic economic plan and how Pima County can use features of this plan to create a more energy-efficient, sustainable, and robust economy in the face of imminent uncertainty.

TUCAN – Tucson Climate Action Network monthly meeting

Organizing for the Scientists’ March in Tucson

Meet at: 350Tucson clubhouse, 255 W. University Blvd.
3 blocks west of Stone Ave., 1 block east of Main, south side of the street. On the Third St / Univ. Blvd Bikeway. Stone/University bus stop serves Sun Tran routes 4, 10, 16, and 19, all running till 11:00pm or later

We’ll be organizing for the Scientists’ March in Tucson (April 22) and more.

SCIENCE, NOT SILENCE https://www.marchforscience.com/

The March for Science is a celebration of our passion for science and a call to support and safeguard the scientific community. Recent policy changes have caused heightened worry among scientists, and the incredible and immediate outpouring of support has made clear that these concerns are also shared by hundreds of thousands of people around the world. Mischaracterization of science as a partisan issue, which has given policymakers permission to reject overwhelming evidence, is a critical and urgent matter. It is time for people who support scientific research and evidence-based policies to take a public stand and be counted.

ON APRIL 22, 2017, WE WALK OUT OF THE LAB AND INTO THE STREETS.

“Transformational Solutions for Climate Change Adaptation and Water Sustainability in the Colorado River Basin”

Seminar by UA Center for Climate Adaptation Science & Solutions: “Transformational Solutions for Climate Change Adaptation and Water Sustainability in the Colorado River Basin”

February 8 at 4:30 p.m.

UA Campus, ENR2 Bldg. Room S0107, 1063 E. Ft. Lowell St.

Speaker: Dave White, Professor, School of Community Resources and Development, Arizona State University

Drawing from use-inspired sustainability science and decision making under uncertainty, this talk will address the overarching question: Given environmental and societal uncertainties, how can cities dependent on the Colorado River Basin develop transformational solutions to implement water sustainability transitions? Managing transitions toward urban water sustainability will require innovative approaches to water governance that are anticipatory, adaptable, just, and evidence-supported.

AZ Corporation Commission public hearing in Tucson

The Arizona Corporation Commission has scheduled a public meeting in Tucson on Wednesday 02/08/17 on the TEP and Trico rate cases. ACC press release states the Commission will be voting on rate cases involving Tucson Electric Power and TRICO Electric Cooperative. Read the full press release here.

State office building, 400 W. Congress St., hearing room #218

It’s a Valentine’s Day party!

Love the Earth.
Love your community.
Love your neighbors.
Love yourself and those close to you.

The February Sustainable Tucson meeting will be a party to celebrate Tucson’s sustainable future and each other, and an evening to dream of how to create a better future for Tucson. This Valentine’s Day Party and Creativity Workshop is a time to get to know other Sustainable Tucson partners like yourself, to exercise a little creativity in creating a vision of what a sustainable and resilient desert community would be like in your neighborhood, and to ENJOY Chocolate and other sweets. We’ll have a little music and dancing, too.

Among other activities, you will have the opportunity to work with other on a kind of game that is a mashup between the Permaculture design technique called Random Associations and the game CLUE. (You’ll be surprised what happens when you combine things like elderly neighbors, traffic calming chicanes, Permaculture food forest, and potlucks.) And since ST is all about making Tucson sustainable while having fun, you will also have a chance to learn about and get involved in our new initiative “The Opposite of Helpless” and our annual Envision Tucson Sustainable Festival.

Please join us on Valentine’s Day, starting at 6:00 at the Ward 6 office. (Doors open at 5:30) We will provide drinks and some sweets. Please bring some chocolate or other sweets to share, if you can.

See you there.

Spring 2017 Permaculture Design Course – Tucson

The 22nd Annual Permaculture Design Course – a Tucson tradition! This course happens over five weekends every February and March. Registration for the 2017 Spring course begins on August 10th.

Dates for the the upcoming Spring 2017 course are the following five weekends -Feb. 4th and 5th, Feb. 11th and 12th, Feb 25th and 26th, Mar. 11th and 12th, and Mar. 18th and 19th. Generally, class runs from 9AM to 5:30 PM each day. The cost for the course is $725 plus there is an optional class book fee of $42 for a copy of Introduction to Permaculture by Bill Mollison. Also highly recommended is Brad Lancaster’s Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands Vol 1 and Vol 2. A limited number of partial scholarships are available.

This Permaculture certification course covers all aspects of sustainable design with a Southwest dry lands flavor, including a balance of hands on experience, classroom time, and design practicum. Dynamic exercises encourage pattern recognition, noticing the links between plants and animals, climate, and landforms that make up natural ecosystems. The course focuses on dry land communities with a strong urban and semi-rural emphasis, addressing individual site and neighborhood “problems”, such as storm water flooding. Students learn to read the landscape, to map and analyze energies flowing through a site, and to develop integrated designs for sustainable systems. The weekend format of the course makes it easier for people who hold a week day job to attend and promotes better integration of the course material into daily life. Our course closely follows the standard 72 hour format developed by Bill Mollison and others.

Course topics include agroforestry, appropriate technology, building design, design principles and patterning, site analysis, drylands gardening principles, ecosystem restoration, philosophy and ethics of Permaculture, regenerative community economics, soils and erosion control, village and community design, water harvesting, invisible structures, and many other topics. The classroom site is in the Central Tucson area and at other Permaculture sites in the Tucson area. Much of the class is held outdoors. This course is taught and facilitated by Dan Dorsey, Brad Lancaster, and Barbara Rose, each with two decades of Permaculture experience, as well as our many extraordinary associate SPG teachers. See the profiles for the core team teachers here. See pictures from previous courses and workshops here.

For the last twenty years this course has been full with a waiting list, so early registration is encouraged. To give a high quality educational experience, we limit the size of the class to eighteen participants. Contact Dan, the course registrar, at dorsey@dakotacom.net or 520-624-8030 to register and/or to receive the syllabus and detailed ‘FAQ’s’ for the course. Some scholarship funds are available.

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER FAIR

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 20, President’s Day, 4:30-6:30
THE HISTORIC Y, 300 E. University Blvd.
This is an event:

– for social and environmental activists to connect and engage and learn about the great work that others are doing with whom they may not be so familiar

– for those with little or no experience in activism who are frustrated by the current political climate, and/or who feel inspired by President Obama’s call to action and are looking to get involved, help vulnerable populations and fight for social and environmental justice, equality and liberal progressive causes

– for people feeling disenfranchised looking to engage within a place of love and support

– for social, environmental and political organizations looking for volunteers

This is for those who are looking for ways to get involved, to learn about the many great organizations there are in Tucson and find causes which resonate with them so that they can, in the words of President Obama, ‘hitch their wagon to something bigger than themselves’, affect positive change, and make a difference. Groups will be able to set up tables where they can educate attendees about their missions, objectives, actions and projects and sign up volunteers to do the work that our democracy demands. We hope people find this a great opportunity to meet like-minded people, get inspired, and make meaningful connections. Beer, snacks, and music will add to the convivial atmosphere in our lobby and our lovely courtyard.

More than 40 organizations are being invited to participate in the Fair. They are social, environmental and political, with an emphasis on fighting for equality and social justice and protecting the environment and vulnerable populations and causes.

Organizations that wish to participate or people seeking more information about the event are encouraged to contact Shawn Burke, 415-218-0020, shawnburke@me.com

Following the Fair, there will be additional social time to encourage introductions, collaboration and idea exchange, from 6:30 to 7, as the setting turns from President’s Day to “Not My President’s Day” with the staged reading of “The Higher Education of Khalid Amir,” an award-winning play with Anti-Trump themes by Monica Bauer, beginning at 7:00 at ZUZI! Theater.

Tucson Citizens Climate Lobby

Saturday Jan. 14th 2017 at Grace St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 2331 E Adams St, Tucson, AZ 85719.

Please join our greater Tucson CCL group for our monthly meeting that starts with welcome and coffee at 9:30, our chapter meeting from 10:00 to 11:00am, followed by our international call. Meeting adjourns at 11:45.

This month’s guest is Yoram Bauman, founder of Washington’s carbon tax initiative – yeson732.0rg.

  • What are the lessons we can learn from the defeat of the Washington state carbon tax referendum, Initiative 732?
  • Bauman holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Washington and is known as the “Stand-up Economist.”
  • He is co-author of the 1998 book Tax Shift that helped inspire the revenue-neutral carbon tax in British Columbia.
  • In 2012, he co-authored with Shi-Ling Hsu an op-ed in the New York Times, The Most Sensible Tax of All.

SAz Solar Partnership – ACC and solar customers

Southern Arizona Solar Partnership will discuss what the recent ACC decisions mean for future solar customers. Get your solar questions answered!!

The Southern Arizona Solar Partnership is a group of folks interested in solar: installers, government people, solar customers and those who just want to see more solar in Tucson!! We meet every other month at PAG (1 East Broadway, 4th Floor). Next meeting is Jan 19 at 2:30 pm.

“Get Back on Your Bike” Class

Join the County’s Bike and Pedestrian Program for an easy 2-hour ride where we get you set up and ready to ride, discuss basic bike topics, and ride local streets to familiarize yourself with how to operate your bike safely. Participants must be able to already ride a bike. Recommended for adults and youth ages 16 and up; 13-15 okay with a parent. Participants receive a choice of one free item: a free helmet, front & rear bike light set, bicycle U-lock, or multi-tool.
INFORMATION: Pima County Bike and Pedestrian Program, (520) 724-BIKE (2453) | Email

WHERE: East Social Center, 7 S. Abrego Dr.

12th Annual Grease Collection and Recycling Event!

Grease Pour

The 12th Annual Grease Collection and Recycling Event will take place on January 7, 2017. This event will give you an opportunity to start the New Year off right by dropping off your used cooking oil and grease from all your holiday cooking and baking.

Since the grease collection event began in November 2005, we have collected nearly 30,000 pounds of grease. We appreciate your support in helping us keep grease out of our sewers!

Please join the Pima County Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department and our community partners: EDGE Group, Grecycle, Pima Association of Governments, and the Town of Sahuarita for the Annual Grease Collection and Recycling Event on Saturday, January 7, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the collection sites below:

  • East O’Rielly Chevrolet 6160 E. Broadway Blvd.
  • Midtown City Council Ward 3 Office 1510 E. Grant Road
  • Northwest Pima Vocational High School 5025 W. Ina Road
  • South Kino Sports Complex 2500 E. Ajo Way
  • Sahuarita Sahuarita Town Hall Complex 375 W. Sahuarita Center Way

The collected grease will be recycled into biodiesel, a cleaner burning fuel than regular diesel.

If you cannot visit one of our grease collection sites on January 7, you can always recycle your grease at the year-round located listed below:
EDGE Group
8939 S. Eisenhower Road
Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 4 p.m.
(520) 790-3341
After hours by appointment

Board of Supervisors hearings on Monsanto

The Pima County Board of Supervisors has tasked County administration with holding public meetings in each supervisors’ district in order to provide the public more information about the Monsanto proposal and the county’s role in the proposal, and to receive feedback from the public.
The scheduled meetings will be:

District 1: January, 9, 2017; 5 p.m.; Oro Valley Public Library, 1305 W. Naranja Drive

District 2: January 19, 2017; 6 p.m.; Quincie Douglas Center, 1575 E. 36th Street

District 3: January 17, 2017; 5 p.m.; Ellie Towne Community Center, 1660 W. Ruthrauff Road

District 4: January 13, 2017; 11 a.m.; Green Valley Recreation Center – las Companas Room, 565 W. Belltower Drive

District 5: January 18, 2017; 6 p.m.; Pima County Housing Center, 801 W. Congress Street

Rally to Protect Immigrants & Refugees

January 14, at 12:00 noon
Tucson Federal Building, 300 W Congress St.

Climate refugees are increasing. Climate activists have issued a call to prepare to provide sanctuary and to resist beginning Saturday, January 14th. A broad coalition that includes United We Dream, National Domestic Workers Alliance, Center for Community Change, FIRM, Standing on the Side of Love, SEIU, faith groups and others has come together to take coordinated action on Saturday, January 14th in support of undocumented immigrants, refugees, Muslims and all who have been targeted by the incoming Trump administration.

Day Against Denial national day of climate action & resistance

January 9, from 4:20 to 5:30 PM
Sen. John McCain’s Tucson office, 407 W. Congress St.
(Just west of Granada & Congress, where there are stops for the Sun Link streetcar and Sun Tran routes 21 & 22. Routes 7 & 12 stop one block to the east, at Church Ave.)

Call on your Senators and ALL Senators to reject Trump’s climate-denying cabinet nominees:
NO to Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State
NO to Scott Pruitt for Environmental Protection Agency Administrator
NO to Ryan Zinke for Secretary of the Interior
NO to Rick Perry for Secretary of Energy
This is a national day of action with at least one action in each state. This action is supported by 350.org, Sierra Club, Credo, Greenpeace, and other national organizations. Come out; Be heard; Strengthen our connections; Build resistance!

DETAILS & SIGN-UP HERE

Women’s March on Washington – Tucson March

Saturday, January 21
10:00 a.m. to noon
Marching from Armory Park to Joel Valdez Main Library

From the event page: “This event is open to all in Tucson who ‘stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families — recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.’ (quote from the National Women’s March on Washington).

“For those of us who support this and want to join together in Tucson, please come! We will march to the Joel D. Valdez library plaza and join up with the Tucson Solidarity Rally.”

For more information: https://www.facebook.com/events/1735764840079360/
http://www.arizonawomensmarch.com/tucson

Earth2Trump Resistance Roadshow Coming to Tucson

The #Earth2Trump Resistance Roadshow, organized by Center for Biological Diversity with other national and local groups, is crossing the country, stopping in 16 cities on its way to Washington, D.C. on its way to protesting at the presidential inauguration.

“The roadshow is rallying and empowering defenders of civil rights and the environment to resist the dangerous agenda of the incoming administration. “

For the Tucson stop of the #Earth2Trump Roadshow, speakers will include Isabel Garcia of Derechos Humanos, Congressman Raúl Grijalva, and Jes Baker (aka The Militant Baker). Featured musicians will include Casey Neill and Lyla June.

Please register and find more information about the event here:
http://action.biologicaldiversity.org/p/salsa/event/common/public/?event_KEY=83069

When: Saturday, Jan. 7, 2-4:30 p.m.
Where: 191 E. Toole Ave., Tucson, AZ 85701 **updated location**
(Take any bus to the Ronstadt Center, walk north on 6th Ave. half a block, turn left on Toole, and you’re there.)

Communicating Climate Change

Our January General Meeting focuses on issues of how we communicate on Climate Change. To stimulate our discussion, we will view selections from a lecture titled “Climate Change in the American Mind,” by Anthony Leiserowitz, the Director of the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication.

The program includes a reading by Susan Feathers (one of the founders of Sustainable Tucson), from her newly released novel Threshold, which looks at Tucson and the Southwest in the not-so-distant future under the impacts of climate change.

Please join us to be part of the discussion and explore ways in which we can communicate more effectively on this vital issue.

Note new day of the week and new location for 2017 General Meetings.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Ward 6 Office, 3202 E 1st St. (one block south of Speedway, one block east of Country Club)
Doors open 5:30 for networking. Program starts 6 pm.

Further References:

Yale Program on Climate Change Communication:

http://climatecommunication.yale.edu

Dr. Anthony Leiserowitz – full March 2015 lecture:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WpmcJDr3KX8

Key Climate Scientists

Dr. James Hansen, 2016 lecture

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42wtAennn8w

Dr. Kevin Anderson 2016 Interview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ck_Ev8oqBh0

December Meeting – Celebrating Community and Sustainability

At our December meeting, we will show how you can celebrate the holidays sustainably. Our first guest, Local First Arizona, will talk about the benefits of shopping “locally” and provide a local guide. Next, we’ve invited Upcycle Tucson to demonstrate how to use recycled materials to make art, gifts, and gift-wraps. We’ll close the evening celebrating community by dancing and singing with the Tucson Circle / Dances of Universal Peace.

Local First Arizona
Think Local. Buy Local. Be Local. Local First Arizona is a nonprofit organization that celebrates independent, locally owned businesses. The organization’s vision is an Arizona economy that is sustainable, resilient, and celebratory of diverse cultures. Local First Arizona educates citizens about local business ownership, social equity, cultural diversity, environmental kinship, and collaboration. It raises public awareness of the economic and cultural benefits provided by strong local economies. Local businesses contribute to a sustainable economy for Arizona and build vibrant communities we’re all proud to call home.

Upcycle Tucson
Shop, create, participate, and advocate! Upcycle Tucson is a creative reuse arts center. Their mission is to promote the creation of functional and aesthetic art from scrap (reusable materials). Upcycle provides inexpensive and gently used materials and offers fun classes on upcycled art. They support local artisans with a gallery featuring the community’s upcycled art. Tonight they will demonstrate how to make a small gift box from an old gift card!

Dances of Universal Peace
Building and Celebrating Community. From the beginning of time, sacred movement, song and story have brought people together. The Dances of Universal Peace are part of this timeless tradition. In the spirit of building community, Sustainable Tucson brings the Dances of Universal Peace to our December meeting. The Dances are simple, meditative, joyous, multi-cultural circle dances that use sacred phrases and movements from all of the world’s wisdom traditions. They touch the spiritual essence within ourselves, and allow us to recognize it in others. There are no performers and no audience.
Please bring cookies or other goodies to share!

December 12, 2016 6 pm – 8 pm (doors open at 5:30 pm)
St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, Geneva Hall
3809 E. 3rd Street (free parking in church lot on 2nd St.)

COP22: A Multimedia Presentation and Discussion about the UN Climate Talks in Marrakech

Speaker(s):
Remy Franklin, Masters Candidate, School of Geography and Development
Location:
ENR2, Rm S230

School of Geography and Development MA Candidate Remy Franklin tells the story of COP22 from his perspective as an activist and observer with the youth advocacy organization, SustainUS.

Sponsored by the Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment and Social Justice.

Light refreshments will be served at 5:45pm.

Localizing Our Economy

Please join Sustainable Tucson for the November General Meeting, “Localizing Our Economy.” We’re excited to present speakers on two innovative tools for financing local entrepreneurs and stimulating the local economy.

• Jim and Pamela Powers Hannley, from Arizonans for a New Economy, will speak on the benefits and possibility of creating an Arizona State Bank, a system designed to support local needs and local control of financial activity.
• Chris Squires, of Ten 55 Brewing, will speak on crowd-funding, equity investment, and the JOBS (Jumpstart Our Business Startups) Act, a law that adjusted various securities regulations in order to encourage broader opportunities for funding of small businesses.

Discussion and Q&A will follow the presentation

6pm-8pm (doors open at 5:30)
St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, Geneva Hall
3809 E. 3rd Street (free parking in church lot on 2nd St.)

Localizing Our Economy

Please join Sustainable Tucson for the November General Meeting, “Localizing Our Economy.” We’re excited to present speakers on two innovative tools for financing local entrepreneurs and stimulating the local economy.

Jim and Pamela Powers Hannley, from Arizonans for a New Economy, will speak on the benefits and possibility of creating an Arizona State Bank, a system designed to support local needs and local control of financial activity.
Chris Squires, of Ten 55 Brewing, will speak on crowd-funding, equity investment, and the JOBS (Jumpstart Our Business Startups) Act, a law that adjusted various securities regulations in order to encourage broader opportunities for funding of small businesses.
Discussion and Q&A will follow the presentations.

St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, Geneva Hall
6pm-8pm (doors open at 5:30)
3809 E. 3rd Street (free parking in church lot on 2nd St.)

Religious response to environmental issues

Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church, 602 N. Wilmot Road, will discuss global climate change and the impact to the environment with five speakers, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29. An optional Mass begins at 8:30 a.m.

According to press materials, speakers include:

Katie Hirschboeck, associate professor of climatology for the University of Arizona’s tree-ring lab and a Catholic Climate Ambassador.
Clark Hansen, a regional organizer for Bread for the World.
Marco Liu, director of advocacy and outreach for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.
Angel Wang from the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona’s committee on creation care.
The Rev. John Leech, associate priest of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church.

To RSVP, email hsieh@dakotacom.net by Tuesday, Oct. 25.

For more information, visit smallangelstucson.org or call 886-7292.

UN Conference in Tucson on Food & Water in Arid Lands

A Food and Water Conference, and a Celebration of Place

WHAT: The 2016 ITKI ● UNESCO ● City of Gastronomy Conference in Tucson, Arizona, USA: Food and Water in Arid Lands: Dialogues across Contemporary and Traditional Knowledge

WHEN: Opens on Friday, November 4, 2016 and concludes on Saturday, November 5 at 5pm, followed by a closing celebration to which all are invited. Additional programming before and after the Conference also available for those interested.

WHERE: The Conference will be held on the University of Arizona Campus, largely in the Student Union Memorial Center.

COST: Absolutely free, but registration required. Space is limited. Please join us!

Please join us for this opportunity to learn about efforts across the globe to create sustainable and thoughtful futures informed by place, history, Traditional Knowledge, and other ways of knowing.

As the world undergoes climate change, urban and rural communities in arid lands need effective adaptive strategies for ensuring resilience in the face of increasing environmental variability, changing weather patterns, dwindling water resources, and intensifying strains on food systems and food security. Join us November 4 and 5, 2016 for discussions with expert panelists about their experiences with water management and water scarcity, their work toward just food systems and sovereignty, and their insights on the roles of local knowledge in adaptation and climate change.

In addition to the Conference, panelists, distinguished guests, and attendees are encouraged to join a number of excursions that highlight both the uniqueness of our region’s cultural and food heritage, as well as our unique scientific inquiries into Earth’s living systems. Click here for more on our Friday night dinner and reception with James Beard Award winning Chef Janos Wilder at the Carriage House, and our Sunday morning brunch and programming at the Desert Museum.
For more on Tucson as a ‘culinary capital’:

Tucson becomes an unlikely food star (New York Times, 23 August 2016)
Tucson, Arizona, cultivates its foodie reputation – with a nod from Unesco (The Guardian, 17 July 2016)

6th Annual Envision Tucson Sustainable Festival


We’re very excited about this year’s Envision Tucson Sustainable Festival, this Sunday, October 16, 11am-4pm, at the YWCA, 525 N. Bonita Ave., with an amazing variety of exhibitors and vendors, speakers, food, music, and lots of fun for all. Check out the Festival website for details.

The Festival is taking place close to Tucson’s origins, reminding us of a history reaching back over 4,000 years of continuous agriculture. Talk about sustainable roots! And Mission Gardens will be at the Festival to share some of that history with us. At the same time, we’re at the heart of Tucson’s Emerging 2030 District, looking to create a sustainable future by working with building owners to reduce energy and water use by 50% by the year 2030.

There’ll be plenty of free parking, but if you choose to come (sustainably) by bike, there’ll be a Bike Valet provided by Living Streets Alliance and sponsored by Ajo Bikes.

So join us on Sunday: Learn about recycling granite for your home, recycling for art projects, and recycling for creating new tools and vehicles. Bring your questions about sustainability issues from desert gardening to neighborhood resilience, from solar for the home to solar cooking, from slow food to native fruits, from energy efficiency to electric vehicles. Find out about improving air quality, harvesting our precious rainwater, building green homes, and much, much more.

AND — There’s still opportunity to volunteer and help on the day of the Festival, from set-up in the morning to break-down at the end of the day. Use the Volunteer page on the Festival website if you can help.

Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum

You’re invited to our next Tucson Energy Group (TEG) Talk which will be an Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum on Thur (9/29), 5:00 – 7:00 PM in the meeting room at Ermanos (http://www.ermanosbrew.com/). (Interested people under 21 years old can attend!)

Candidates Attending:
Robert “Bob” Burns (www.BobBurns.gop),
Tom Chabin (www.TomChapin.com),
Boyd Dunn (www.BoydDunn.com),
Bill Mundell (www.BillMundell.org ), &
Not yet confirmed:
Andy Tobin (www.AndyTobin.com).

We all know that this 2016 ACC election is critical to Arizona’s future, so I hope that you can join us and distribute this invitation freely to others who might be interested.

The University of Arizona’s Students for Sustainability will be in attendance to register voters during the forum.

Institute of the Environment – Fall Fest 2016

The Institute of the Environment’s annual Fall Fest is back and better than ever, with a graduate student poster competition, amazing door prizes, good food and drink, and remarks from this year’s featured speaker, Rebecca Tsosie, on “Climate Justice, Indigenous Sustainability, and an Ethic of Place.” Come catch up with colleagues and enjoy the festivities in ENR2, the UA’s newest LEED platinum building!

Location: ENR2, Room S107, 1064 E. Lowell Street

Solidarity Rally – resisting the Dakota Access Pipeline

Join Rising Tide Tucson and others for a Solidarity Rally with the water protectors of Standing Rock resisting the Dakota Access Pipeline. We will be gathering on Wednesday September 14th at 4:30 at Bank of America downtown (33 N. Stone, between Congress and Pennington). Bank of America is one of many financial institutions investing in the pipeline. Bring signs showing your solidarity with the indigenous-led resistance and calling out Bank of America for its support of environmental destruction.

Last week, the Red Warrior and Sacred Stone camps issued a call for two weeks of solidarity actions targeting companies responsible for the Dakota Access Pipeline from Sept. 3-17. Let’s make a statement that Tucson stands strong in solidarity with this historic movement.

The proposed pipeline will bring oil from North Dakota to Illinois, crossing the Missouri River near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation, critically endangering water resources for the tribe and desecrating sacred lands containing burial sites and cultural artifacts. The resistance at Standing Rock has brought over a hundred tribes together in a historic display of strength and unity. Bulldozers have already torn up sacred lands, and the people fighting to protect them have been met with pepper spray and attack dogs. Though the Obama administration issued a statement earlier today halting construction in the area until further review, continual pressure is needed to stop this pipeline from becoming a reality.

INTEGRATING SUSTAINABLE BUILDING AND LIVING WITH NATURE

In the first part of his talk, Dr. Fitch will define sustainable and regenerative building and why the concept is so important to society, natural environments, and the Earth’s Biosphere. He will then outline the steps and technologies of sustainable, regenerative building, using the solar-powered home he built in Redstone Canyon, Colorado, as an example. Lastly, he will discuss the environmental, economic, and societal advantages of this type of building including the spiritual benefits.

Dr. John H. Fitch has a long-term interest and career in ecology, wildlife biology, ecosystems conservation, animal behavior, environmental policy, and sustainability. He has worked on these topics in government, academic, and nonprofit organizations. He received a BA in anthropology and zoology from the University of Kansas and a MS and PhD in ecology and zoology from Michigan State University.

Sponsored by Institute for Noetic Sciences
Join us in exploring human consciousness: The most compelling frontier of our time.

Friday, November 4, 2016 at 6:30 PM
Open to the Public — Admission cost: $5
Unity of Tucson, 3617 N. Camino Blanco
off River between Swan & Craycroft

Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum

You’re invited to our next Tucson Energy Group (TEG) Talk which will be an Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum on Thur (9/29), 5:00 – 7:00 PM in the meeting room at Ermanos (http://www.ermanosbrew.com/). We all know that this 2016 ACC election is critical to Arizona’s future, so I hope that you can join us and distribute this invitation freely to others who might be interested. Please RSVP by 9/22, if possible, so we can accommodate everyone who wants to attend. Doug (520-250-2553)

Confirmed Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidates:

  • Robert “Bob” Burns (www.BobBurns.gop),
  • Tom Chabin (www.TomChapin.com),
  • Boyd Dunn (www.BoydDunn.com),
  • Bill Mundell (www.BillMundell.org )

Location: meeting room at Ermanos (http://www.ermanosbrew.com/)

Tucson Energy Group (TEG) – Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum

You’re invited to our next Tucson Energy Group (TEG) Talk which will be an Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Candidate Forum on Thur (9/29), 5:00 – 7:00 PM in the meeting room at Ermanos (http://www.ermanosbrew.com/).

Three of the five candidates (Tom Chabin, Boyd Dunn & Bill Mundell) have already committed to attend, thanks to Robert Bulechek’s help. I have not heard back yet from the other two candidates (Bob Burns & Andy Tobin), but your involvement might still encourage their participation.

Candidates will provide brief individual presentations (under 5 mins.), followed by their answers to written questions and then a moderated discussion with our well-informed audience of area energy professionals.

We all know that this 2016 ACC election is critical to Arizona’s future, so I hope that you can join us and distribute this invitation freely to others who might be interested.

Please RSVP by 9/22, if possible, so we can accommodate everyone who wants to attend. Doug (520-250-2553)

The ABCs of the ACC: A Full Run-down of the Arizona Corporation Commission

We’re all familiar with the role of the ACC in setting our electricity rates. Many of you were probably at the ACC public hearing in Tucson on August 31 and may even have given testimony about TEP’s rate case now before the Commission. But do you know the full range of what the ACC does?

The Arizona Corporation Commission, known as the “4th branch of government in Arizona,” impacts our lives and the economy of the state in many ways — not just our utility rates. This meeting will provide an overview of all aspects of the ACC’s work. In November, we’ll be voting for candidates to fill three seats on the Commission, and this program will help ensure that we’re all informed voters as we make that decision.

Join Sustainable Tucson for our September Monthly Meeting, presented in collaboration with Sierra Club Grand Canyon Chapter. Speakers (confirmed to date) will be Sandy Bahr and Dan Millis.

Meeting Date: September 12, 2016
St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, in Geneva Hall, at 3809 E. 3rd St. (west of Alvernon, south of Speedway).
Doors open at 5:30 pm; program begins at 6:00 pm
Free parking in the church lots off 2nd St. (preferred) and 3rd St.

Speak Up for Solar! With a Change of Date, Change of Location

Join Sustainable Tucson for our monthly August meeting, focusing on rooftop solar and getting the community ready for the upcoming Aug 31 ACC hearing in Tucson on TEP’s rate request. The meeting will start with the movie “Catching the Sun”, followed by current information on TEP’s request, with background on rate requests by other utilities, the expected effect of the rate request — if approved — on all customers and the projected impact on the spread of rooftop solar in the region. Along with what to expect at the ACC hearing, the meeting will include the opportunity for letter-writing, to share our position on the rate request.

NOTE CHANGE of DATE, CHANGE of LOCATION, EARLY START TIME for this meeting!
August 22, 2016 Doors open 5:15 pm, Program starts 5:45 pm (to allow enough time for the movie)
St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, 3809 E 3rd St, Tucson, AZ (just west of Alvernon)
Free parking in church lots on 3rd St. and 2nd St.

………………………..

Save the Date! September 12
The September Monthly Meeting will again be held at St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church.
Presented jointly with Sierra Club Grand Canyon Chapter:
The ABCs of the ACC: Understanding the Arizona Corporation Commission

Minimalism

Some of the themes from A Simpler Way will be explored in Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things in Life, for which Sustainable Tucson will be a Community Partner with The Loft Cinema, on July 19th at 7:30pm. This film looks at living minimally in all aspects of life, from our interaction with the environment to business, from music to design and architecture. As the film’s website explains, “minimalism is a lifestyle that helps people question what things add value to their lives—clearing the clutter from life’s path so we can make room for the most important things.” The film “explores various recipes for how to live a more meaningful, deliberate life. Not a perfect life, not an easy life—a simple one.”

A panel discussion after the film will include Tucson architect Frank Mascia, who is featured in the film.

For more information:

The Loft Cinema is located at 3233 E. Speedway Blvd., Tucson. Stop by the Sustainable Tucson table before the film.

A Simpler Way: Crisis as Opportunity

July Monthly Meeting – Movie night
This month’s Sustainable Tucson meeting be a showing of A Simpler Way: Crisis as Opportunity, a recently released feature-length documentary that follows an intentional community in Australia who came together to explore and demonstrate a simpler way to live in response to global crises. Throughout the year presented in the film, the group builds tiny houses, plants veggie gardens, explores their understanding of simple living, and discovers the challenges of living in community. Interspersed with segments showing how the community developed are shorts interviews with permaculture specialists, economists, authors, and other scholars, who explore those global crises and with the changes we all need to make in addressing them.

Written and produced by Jordan Osmond, founder of Happen Films, and Dr. Samuel Alexander, co-director of the Simplicity Institute, A Simpler Way was made on a limited budget, all of it crowdfunded by its many supporters. Here, Osmond writes of the motivation behind the film:

“The dominant mode of global development today seeks to universalize high-consumption consumer lifestyles, but this has produced perverse inequalities of wealth and – to an extent that is no longer possible to ignore – is environmentally catastrophic. We are called on to take shorter showers, recycle, buy ‘green’ products, and turn the lights off when we leave the room, but these measures are grossly inadequate. We need more fundamental change – personally, culturally, and structurally.

“The purpose of the documentary is to envision a way of life that positively responds to the overlapping global crises of climate change, peak oil, economic collapse, and consumerism. Genuine progress today means building a new, more resilient world based on permaculture, simple living, renewable energy, and localized economies. Most of all, we need to reimagine the good life beyond consumer culture and begin building a world that supports a simpler way of life. This does not mean hardship or deprivation. It means focusing on having enough, for everyone, forever.”

Please join us for this exciting film and for discussion afterwards addressing implications for our own lives and for our community here in Tucson and Southern Arizona.

As always, the meeting is at the downstairs meeting room of the
Downtown Main Library, 101 N Stone.
Doors open at 5:30. Movie starts at 6:00

A Time to Choose

Along with The Loft Cinema and the UA Institute of the Environment, Sustainable Tucson will be co-presenting the film “A Time to Choose,” which will be shown June 15, at 7:30 pm, at The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. Come early and visit with us at the Sustainable Tucson table on the patio. The film addresses worldwide climate change, looking at both the challenges and possible solutions.

For more information: https://loftcinema.com/film/time-to-choose/

Additional reviews (just to entice you to attend):
https://www.washingtonpost.com/goingoutguide/movies/a-time-to-choose-makes-an-eloquent-case-for-acting-to-save-the-planet-now/2016/06/02/433b17b8-2441-11e6-9e7f-57890b612299_story.html

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/la-et-mn-time-to-choose-review-20160531-snap-story.html

Food Resilience — Learning to Adapt, Survive & Thrive in the 21st Century

Of all the things that we could do to make Tucson more resilient — better able to survive and thrive, no matter what the world throws at us — the “lowest hanging fruit” is probably — FOOD. Who woulda thunk it?

Come to the joint meeting of Sustainable Tucson and Ward 3 Neighbors Alliance this coming Monday (June 13 at 6:00) at the Downtown Main Library.

This meeting will focus on what Tucson is already doing to create a beautiful and healthy community that can provide a more secure food supply based on our renewable rainfall, ample land, year-round growing climate, and long tradition of unique local food.

A panel of local experts will discuss what Tucson is already doing that contribute to our food resilience, as well as what we might do to magnify our efforts. The panelists are:
• Nick Henry – Director of the Community Food Bank’s Food Resource Center
• Sarah Brown – Co-coordinator of Watershed Management Group
• Oscar Medina – Changemaker High School teacher in History, Civics, and Urban Agriculture Restorative Ecology
• Carolyn Niethammer – Author on the plants, food, environmet, and people of the Southwest
• Tres English – Director of Sustainable Tucson Food Resilience Project
The panel discussion will be followed by Q&A from the audience.

In addition to the panel, there will be an opportunity to talk with local vendors who are directly involved in local sustainability. Currently confirmed are:
• Tanks Green Stuff
• Iskashitaa Refugee Harvesting Network
• Tucson Organic Gardeners.
• Carolyn Niethammer – Local author on SW food, environment and people

Join us for lively discussion on an important issue facing Tucson.

As always, the doors of the downstairs meeting room open at 5:30 and the program starts promptly at 6:00. Parking is free in the parking garage below the Main Library.

Sustainability and Architecture: USGBC ADVANCE and Tucson’s Prospective 2030 District®

For our May General Meeting, Sustainable Tucson is very pleased to present “Sustainability and Architecture: USGBC ADVANCE and Tucson’s Prospective 2030 District®.” This program will present the innovative partnership between the 2030 Districts and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)-Arizona Sonoran Branch, with the goal of developing a 2030 District® here in Tucson.

First established in Seattle, 2030 Districts® are unique private/ public partnerships that bring property owners, managers, and developers together with local governments, businesses, and community stakeholders to provide a business model for urban sustainability through collaboration, leveraged financing, and shared resources. Now in 11 other cities across North America, 2030 Districts® are forming to meet the energy, water, and vehicle emissions reduction targets for existing buildings and new construction called for by Architecture 2030 in the 2030 Challenge for Planning.

Here in Tucson, since late January of this year, a growing group of representatives from community environmental organizations, City and County departments, and building professionals have been meeting regularly to explore the development of a 2030 District in Tucson. Initial focus has been on forming a District in the Bonita neighborhood in Menlo Park, but there is also interest in expanding to include downtown Tucson and the U of A. The 2030 Challenge for Planning goals, which need to be adopted to form a District, if successfully met, would result in reducing energy use, water use, and CO2 transportation emissions by 50% District-wide by 2030.

USGBC-Arizona Sonoran Branch members, working together with Architecture 2030 and 2030 Districts® representatives, have formed the Tucson ADVANCE/2030 District Partnership (TADP), in a joint effort to provide free resources and tools such as ENERGY STAR to benchmark, develop, and implement creative strategies, best practices, and verification methods for measuring progress towards the goals of the 2030 Challenge for Planning and the Tucson 2030 District. (See article below for related training event.)

Speakers include:
Peter Dobrovolny: Retired Architect/Planner and 2030 District Advocate. Peter was instrumental in forming the first 2030 District in Seattle and is currently facilitating the exploration of a 2030 District in Tucson
Michael Peel: Community and Government Relations Liaison, Pima Community College. Michael is facilitating the USGBC ADVANCE training that is focused on development of the Tucson ADVANCE Prospective 2030 District.
Ray Clamons: Owner of Xylon Designs Sustainable Architecture & Water Harvesting Landscapes. Ray has produced the concept of the Bonita District – Tucson 2030 District and is currently active in planning for that District.
Joel Loveland: Professor Emeritus University of Washington (UW) School of Architecture and Director, UW Center for Integrated Design; 2030 District Advocate. Joel is currently supporting Peter and Michael in the area of building performance analysis and benchmarking for the emerging 2030 District in Tucson.

Monday, May 9, 2016
Joel D. Valdez Main Library, Lower level Conference room
101 N Stone (lower level parking off Alameda St.)
Program begins at 6:00pm. Doors open at 5:30 for networking.

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS AND YWCA OFFER FREE WORKSHOPS

Is your organization planning to hold a candidate or issue forum this year? If so, you’ll want to attend the free workshops being offered on Saturday, April 30th.

The morning will be devoted to a presentation on how to plan forums, and the afternoon will be on how to moderate forums, with hands-on practice.

Both will be at the YWCA, 525 N. Bonita Avenue. The morning workshop begins at 9 AM, and the afternoon one at 12:30. Light refreshments provided; if you’re staying for the full day, bring a bag lunch or purchase food on site. You can register for one or both workshops at the League’s website at www.lwvgt.org or call 520/327-7652.

“Catching the Sun” New Film Screening

You are invited to a screening of the new film “Catching the Sun” on Friday, April 22nd at 7pm at Casa Video Film Bar at 2905 E Speedway Blvd.

Catching The Sun is a feature length documentary that explores the global race to a clean energy future. The event will be done by donation, as Tucson Solar Punk is fronting the cost for distribution rights. Check out the Trailer at catchingthesun.tv.

The film follows the hope and heartbreak of unemployed American workers seeking jobs in the solar industry, and sheds light on the path to an economically just and environmentally sustainable future. Set against the struggle to build a ‘green economy’, Catching the Sun will engage new audiences in solutions to climate change and income inequality. Please spread the word to others among your networks.

I hope to see you at the theater!

We Need to Electrify As Much Transportation As We Can – Heinberg

We Need to Electrify As Much Transportation As We Can

by Richard Heinberg

Transcript:

JESSICA DESVARIEUX, PRODUCER, TRNN: Welcome to the Real News Network. I’m Jessica Desvarieux in Baltimore.

Folks are lining up to reserve electric car automaker Tesla’s Model 3. It’s considered to be one of the first electric cars for the mass market at an expected price tag of 35 thousand dollars. Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, will be unveiling the vehicle on Thursday evening, so we can’t show you what it will actually look like. But in this segment we wanted to get beyond the consumerism and ask, will this be a game changer for the automobile industry in America and the environment?

Now joining us to help us answer that question is Richard Heinberg. He’s a senior fellow at the Post Carbon Institute. Thanks so much for joining us, Richard.

RICHARD HEINBERG: It’s a pleasure, Jessica.

DESVARIEUX: So, Richard, why has it taken so long for an affordable electric car to sort of come to the market? I’m reminded of the 2006 documentary “Who Killed the Electric Car?” which really highlights how we essentially went from having electric cars on California roads in the ’90s to then, eventually, shredding and destroying those very same vehicles years later. So my question to you, Richard, is, who killed the electric car?

HEINBERG: Well, the bosses at the Detroit automakers decided back in the 1990s that there wouldn’t be a mass market for the electric car because of the short range of the vehicles. They thought consumers wouldn’t buy a car if it didn’t have a two to three hundred mile range, and the batteries at that time were not capable of delivering that kind of range. So even though they built some prototypes and sent them out to drivers, they never produced a mass market car.

Today, battery technology has improved enough so that it is possible to produce an electric car for the masses with at least a 200-mile range, and that’s what’s anticipated for the Tesla Model 3.

DESVARIEUX: Okay. there are some folks that are saying that this isn’t as big of a game changer as people are making it out to be, because essentially you’re getting power to charge your electric vehicle from fossil fuel sources like coal. Do you agree with that?

HEINBERG: Not entirely. First of all, the energy mix is different in different parts of the country. Some parts of the country, electricity is mostly coming from coal. In other parts of the country the mix is more oriented toward natural gas, hydro and renewables. So, first of all, it depends on where you’re getting your electricity from.

And second, you know, if you look out at the energy transition that we’re just beginning right now, away from fossil fuels toward renewables, it’s clear that one of the main strategies that we’ll have to pursue during this energy transition is electrification. Right now only about 20 percent of the final energy that we use in the United States is in the form of electricity. The rest is in the form of liquid fuels for transportation, energy for high heat industrial processes and so on.

We have to electrify as much of that energy usage as we can, because most of our renewable sources of energy produce electricity. That’s true of solar and wind, geothermal and hydro power. So we need to electrify as much transportation as we can.

DESVARIEUX: Okay. You have some automakers, you know, really touting this as a bright future, that we’re going to see more and more electric cars hit the market. I want to ask you about the role of cheap oil. Do you think that threatens he growth of the electric car industry?

HEINBERG: Well, probably not over the long run. We’re headed toward electric cars one way or the other, I think. However, over the short run it definitely takes some wind out of the sails, because from the consumer’s standpoint the biggest draw for an electric car is that over the lifetime of ownership the operating costs are much lower, so if you have cheap gas that changes that differential a bit, so that there’s not as much of an advantage.

DESVARIEUX: Okay, let’s talk about the future. What would a truly green transportation system look like, and are there some states or countries that are really laying out a road map to get us there?

HEINBERG: Well, a truly green transportation system probably wouldn’t rely on electric cars that much because it wouldn’t be relying on cars that much. Cars are an inherently inefficient mode of transportation. I mean, think about it. Most cars just have a driver and maybe one passenger, and meanwhile you’re dragging around two tons of metal, glass and plastic in order to get those one or two people where they want to go.

Much more efficient modes of transportation are light rail, any kind of public transportation, actually. So what we really need is to build up more rail transport and get people walking and bicycling as much as possible.

DESVARIEUX: Okay. Richard Heinberg, thank you so much for joining us.

HEINBERG: It’s been a pleasure. Thanks, Jessica.

DESVARIEUX: And thank you for joining us on the Real News Network.

DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.

Electric car teaser image via shutterstock. Reproduced at Resilience.org with permission.


Content on this site is subject to our fair use notice.

Resilience is a program of Post Carbon Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping the world transition away from fossil fuels and build sustainable, resilient communities.


Source URL: http://www.resilience.org/stories/2016-04-04/we-need-to-electrify-as-much-transportation-as-we-can

ST April General Mtg – Tucson’s Energy-Economy-Climate Revolution

Sustainable Tucson’s April General Meeting will provide an up-to-the-minute update on efforts to pave the way for creating a positive energy-economy-climate future for our region.

Tucson-based international economist Skip Laitner will report for the RENEW team on this important three-part community initiative. These include 1) intervening in the Arizona Corporation Commission’s current energy rate cases for southern Arizona; 2) high-level discussions with senior Tucson Electric Power staff; and 3) building community support for a sane and prosperous energy future.

RENEW (Ratepayers Expect New Economic Wisdom) is a collaboration of Tucson-based individuals, groups, and businesses who have begun the hard discussion of positive strategies that might strengthen the region’s economy at the same time we transition to clean, renewable energy sources.

Monday, April 11, 2016
Downtown Library, 101 N Stone
Lower level Conference room.
Program begins at 6:00pm. Doors open at 5:30

 

Historic Broadway widening links and articles

“Intro to Broadway Widening Project – Who What, When, Why: Why Are We Spending $74 Million and Destroying 30 Buildings in a Central Historic Area while Producing No Traffic Improvement?”

Overview and background, an intro for people who are learning about the situation. By Dave Bilgray.

http://www.sustainabletucson.org/2016/03/intro-to-broadway-project-who-what-when-why-why-why/

 

An excellent OpEd by Tucson architect Bob Vint on how Historic Broadway should be designed:
http://tucson.com/news/opinion/column/guest/robert-vint-broadway-renovation-plan-needs-a-redo/article_7100d70a-8844-5150-873c-cb6d6d230f98.html

 

“Broadway widening WILL NOT speed cars…or buses…or pedestrians…or even bicycles!”

Details about minimal benefits, and RTA text showing that job doesn’t need to be done. By Les Pierce.

http://www.sustainabletucson.org/2016/03/data-crunched-broadway-widening-will-not-speed-cars-or-buses-or-pedestrians-or-even-bicycles/

 

“City’s April 2016 Plan differs from Previous Recommendations and Adoptions”

Differences between base alignment, as agreed to by Citizen Task Force and Mayor and Council, and specifications produced by City staff and consultants.

By Broadway Coalition

http://www.sustainabletucson.org/?p=8029

 

“Impacts of the Broadway Widening”

Various impacts on neighborhoods and Tucson overall. By Diana Lett.

http://www.sustainabletucson.org/2016/03/10-impacts-of-the-proposed-broadway-widening/

 

“Has HDR Engineers done what they were hired to do?”

Scope of work by consulting firm, as specified by Mayor and Council, and as actually done. By Margot Garcia.

http://www.sustainabletucson.org/2016/03/has-hdr-engineers-done-what-they-were-hired-to-do/

 

“Broadway project draft Design Concept Report”

City document with basic project design

bar graph showing 6-second traffic improvement is on page 5.9, which is page 77 in the pdf.

http://broadwayboulevard.info/pdf/Broadway-DCR-Public-Review-FullDoc-120815.pdf

 

Parsons-Brinckerhoff 1987 “Broadway Corridor Transportation Study”

referenced in Les Pierce’s writeup.

see Table 3, page 10, which is page 16 of pdf, for compared expectations of various roadway configuration options

says that intersections should be 14-16 lanes wide, on page 10, which is page 16 in the pdf.

https://www.tucsonaz.gov/files/transportation/broadwaycorridortransstudy.pdf

 

Link to the Broadway Coalition Petition drive to oppose the City’s unnecessary alignment plan:

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/develop-historic-broadway-not-wastefully-widen-the

 

Copy of the Petition as a PDF to distribute:

Copy Broadway Petition

 

400 Comments regarding the Broadway widening from the community recorded during the current Petition Drive :

Broadway Petition Comments

Intro to Broadway Project – Who, What, When, Why?

Why Are We Spending $74 Million

and

Destroying 30 Buildings in a Central Historic Area

while

Producing No Traffic Improvement?

 

The Broadway Improvement Project is not needed, and will provide no benefit to the residents of Tucson.  The City’s own data shows that widening Broadway will provide only a 6-second improvement in travel time.

 

The City of Tucson wants to bulldoze dozens of buildings, many of them historically significant, to handle nonexistent traffic increases which were projected 30 years ago, but did not materialize.

 

The effort started in the 80s, when City analysts predicted a substantial increase in Broadway traffic by 2005. This began a decades-long push to widen Broadway, despite a consulting firm’s analysis that widening would not improve traffic flow.  The reason is the delays at intersections.  The City got funding for the project in 2006, as part of the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) proposition.

 

But the traffic increase didn’t happen, for two reasons:

 

1. Population growth, which had been primarily to the East, went to the Northwest instead.

2. Aviation Parkway was completed in the 90s, providing an alternative for residents in Southeast Tucson.

 

In 2009, a consultant’s study showed that Broadway traffic was essentially unchanged since the 80s. That should have squelched the project. But the City said it was obligated to do the job, because voters approved it as part of the RTA. (Not true. The RTA proposition said a change in the plan was permitted if there was “no degradation in performance”. That 6-second difference is 1 percent, which would certainly be within the limit.)

 

So the City’s plans continued. The original design was for widening Broadway to 8 lanes, 150 feet wide. That’s half the length of a football field. More than 100 structures would be demolished, mostly locally-owned businesses, including nearly everything on the North side of Broadway, from Euclid to Country Club.

 

There was strong opposition by thousands of citizens and several neighborhood associations.  This resulted in creation of a citizen’s task force, with representatives from business, neighborhood, and disabled communities. Between June 2012 and May 2015, the task force held 37 design meetings, coordinated by City staff and consultants. There were 5 Open Houses, each attended by several hundred people, and five Business and Property Owner Meetings.

 

In late 2014, a compromise was reached between the City, RTA, and task force, calling for 6 lanes, with an estimated 10-12 buildings to be torn down. City agencies and consultants were to work out technical details.

 

We have now received the revised plan. It calls for at least 30 buildings to be demolished — triple the City’s compromise estimate — including 2 blocks of houses in Rincon Heights.  Many other buildings will become inaccessible, and will likely be destroyed, because their driveways and/or parking lots will be wiped out.  There also are changes at intersections which impact nearby neighborhoods, by diverting or blocking traffic flow.

 

Will the Broadway Corridor be a gateway to our revitalized downtown, with locally-owned businesses, and human scale?  Or will it be a wide swath of asphalt, straddled by empty lots and the dream of big box stores?

 

Tucson got a black eye with Rio Nuevo.  Let’s not do it again.  The money can be spent on sidewalks, landscaping, and ADA compliance, which would enhance the area. Please tell your City Council member to reject this wasteful and harmful idea, once and for all.

 

For more info:   www.sustainabletucson.org     www.facebook.com/broadwaycoalition

 

Thanks to Margot Garcia, for providing background and chronological information; Les Pierce, for identifying important items in City and RTA documents; and Bob Cook, for wording suggestions.

Has HDR Engineers done what they were hired to do?

Has HDR Engineers done what they were hired to do?

Here is the scope of work

The phrases below are excerpted from the 2011 Scope of Work issued by COT Dept. of Procurement for the Broadway Project used to issue the contract to HDR Engineering.

 

The consultant is to establish

  • “an innovative and context sensitive, solutions-oriented approach toward the redesign of this major roadway…
  • the selected team will redesign Broadway into a multi-modal boulevard using a variety of land use strategies to preserve historic structures…..
  • Project development should include utilization of innovative urban design, streetscape, xeriscape and environmental sustainability concepts to promote a vibrant, green, and liveable urban character….
  • consideration should be given to…long term transit development; the value of mid-century and other historic properties along the corridor; …and residential district location, form, and design.
  • Part of this project will consider how to enhance transit capability and how planning and design of facilities can increase ridership as well as foster future development of a streetcar, or light-rail system.”

 

They haven’t done any of this.

City Council, Send the design back and tell them to do what they were hired to do!!!